Curb Your Sweet Tooth with Healthier Options

Is your sweet tooth aching for another hit of something sugary and decadent? Drop the cookie and back away slowly. Below are a few ideas to help you satisfy your cravings without sabotaging your diet and health goals.

Fruit
This option might seem like a no-brainer, but when you’re looking for your next fix, try reaching for a piece of fruit instead of something loaded with refined sugar, high fructose corn syrup, or artificial sweeteners. Studies show that the reward center of your brain interprets the natural sugars in fruit the same way it does added sugar in junk food. What does this mean? You’ll get the same mental warm fuzzies without the added health hazard.

Get the most out of it

Of course, the healthiest way to consume fruit is to eat it in its raw, unaltered form, but if that’s not appealing to you, you can get creative. If you’re craving something warm and comforting, try slicing an apple, sprinkling it with cinnamon, and heating it for a delicious treat. Opt for a fresh fruit smoothie in your morning routine instead of your sugar-laden frap. Try frozen banana “nice cream” instead of your evening dish of ice cream… your opportunities are limitless.

Raw Honey
Raw honey† is a powerhouse, natural sweetener. It’s important to note that we’re talking about raw honey. After honey has been pasteurized, it loses many of it’s health benefits. Most of the honey you’ll find on your grocery store shelves has been processed to improve the color and texture, so if you’re interested in trying raw honey, it’s best to find a trusted local producer.

Get the most out of it

Drizzle raw honey anywhere you’d like to add some sweetness: your toast or bagel, over breakfast cereals, or in your yogurt. You can add it to your coffee or tea as well, but you want to make sure your beverage has cooled to a lukewarm temperature, so as not to destroy the honey’s nutrients.

Dates
The mild flavor of dates makes them the ideal candidate for sugar replacement. In addition to their light, delicious flavor, dates are a great source for vitamins A and K, and loaded with fiber. You can sprinkle dried chopped dates on your cereal or yogurt or make date paste to replace sugar in recipes.

Get the most out of it

You can find plenty of recipes that contain dates as a natural sweetener in place of sugar, or you can swap out the sugar in your favorite recipes. To make date paste, simply purée 1 cup of pitted dates with ½ cup of hot water until a thick paste is made. You can add more water until your paste reaches your desired thickness. 

† Please note, raw honey can contain botulism spores and can be very dangerous to infants under 12 months. Healthy adults and children over the age of one are at lower risk of illness because their digestive systems are able to prevent botulism spores from thriving.

This blog is not intended to provide diagnosis, treatment or medical advice. Content is for informational purposes only. Please consult with a physician or other healthcare professional regarding any medical or health related diagnosis or treatment options.